Coalition of Franchisee Associations

June 8, 2023

Franchisees, Franchisees, and the IFA

An anonymous question received this week:

"I know what the organization says publicly but is the IFA pro-franchisee or are they more of an extension of franchisors? I'm not sure that you can be both."

For franchisees and the IFA - You need each other, in much the same way that you need your franchisor. Every industry needs public and political representation. But, this is very much of a "strange bedfellows" situation. The relationship needs to be carefully managed.

A couple of hypotheticals: If the IFA wanted to work against proposed legislation that would regulate the industry in a way that would harm the entire franchise industry it would be good to have all franchisees on board.

But, what about legislation or regulation that would give franchisors the absolute power to develop new locations with no consideration given for cannibalization of the sales of existing locations? Franchisees might want to be on the opposite side of the IFA.

Traditionally the IFA was for franchisor members only. A few decades ago they realized that was publically untenable and started allowing franchisees as members. 

McDonald's Owner/Operators will need to trust their selected and elected representatives to manage the relationship with the IFA. Everyone should expect that when it comes down to the IFA and the best interests of the big franchisors - the franchisees will go under the bus.


Anonymous said...

The IFA is still 90%++ FRANCHISORS. Do not trust them. They were the ones (IFA) who derailed the Arizona pro franchisee bill, and they (IFA) were part of bringing in Tyson Foods to testify against the pro franchisee bill in Arkansas. They also played a major role in scuttling the New Jersey pro franchisee hospitality bill. THEY ARE FRANCHISOR ALLIES NOT FRANCHISEES.

Richard Adams said...

Like I said, look out for the bus.

Anonymous said...

IFA claims to be "Pro Franchising" and not just pro franchisor.

Of course, franchisors and supplies pay the bills, so expect that that money gets respected. Also know that without franchisees, there is no money to pay those IFA bills, and no franchising at all.

They aren't stupid at IFA. Franchisee investment drives the aforementioned bus. Yes, there are horrible franchisors and good franchisors. Both of them are at IFA and they don't agree with each other. Often.

IFA and franchisees can and will disagree about things, especially things in a articular relationship law but there are things that should be matters of complete agreement. Like laws that treat a franchised business differently than a non franchised competitor. There are places where franchisees have to pay a higher minimum wage or or other more stringent rules than their non franchised competitors do. This just one example.